Wrestling: Two state champions propel Falcons to third place at state championships

Armando Murillo won the state title at 165 pounds
Armando Murillo won the state title at 165 pounds

Although the drama of who would win the CCCAA State Wrestling Championship was already decided, it was a nail-biter for second and third place on Saturday at West Hills-Lemoore College. Fresno City College, who captured the state title, was watching with everyone else in anticipation to see who would take second place. When all the dust had settled, Cerritos College fell one point short of Mt. San Antonio College, who finished second with 154.5 team points, with the Falcons concluding with 153.5 team points.

Cerritos did celebrate a pair of state champions, with four of their 12 entries reaching the finals in their respective weight classes. In all, the Falcons had six All-Americans and placed in the top three in team scoring for the 23rd time in school history, and eighth time under the leadership of head coach Donny Garriott.

Sophomore 165-pound Armando Murillo (Rowland HS), who placed third at the state championships last season, won all three of his matches to capture the state title. He opened the day with a 6-1 victory over Jon Hernandez of Sacramento City College to advance to the finals. In that match against Jesus Gutierrez of Victor Valley College, Murillo scored all the points he would need in the second period. After a scoreless first period, Murillo started the second period in the down position against Gutierrez. It took :36 seconds for him to score an escape point and then put himself in position to win the championship with a takedown with only :06 seconds left on the clock. Murillo surrendered his only point when Gutierrez escaped :15 seconds into the third period and then held him off to win the championship.

Felix Osorio won the state title at 149 pounds Earlier in the evening, sophomore 149-pound Felix Osorio (Santa Fe HS), a fifth place finisher at the state championships last season, earned his state championship. He fended off Aiden Hansen of Moorpark College, 9-4 in the semifinals to advance to the finals. Taking on James Juarez of Bakersfield College in the championship match, Osorio (pictured, left) opened a 4-1 lead in the first period and systematically added to his point total with two more takedowns in the second period and went on to a convincing 14-5 victory.

Two other Falcons competed in championship matches, but came up short in their quest for a title. At 141 pounds, freshman Mario De La Torre (Temescal Canyon HS) earned a 7-2 semifinal win over Wyatt Carter of Modesto College to advance to the finals, where he took on defending state champion Wayne Joint of West Hills-Lemoore College. A first period takedown by Joint with :53 seconds remaining turned out to be insurmountable, as De La Torre was held off the scoreboard in a 3-0 loss. The final championship match by a Falcon came at 197 pounds, where freshman Malachi Lyles (Mayfair HS) was taking on Fresno City College's Rudy Garcia. A 7-2 win over Joel Lopez of Shasta College send Lyles to the finals, where he would get a chance to avenge an earlier loss to Garcia. It was a tight 3-3 match in the second period, as each wrestler recorded a takedown and an escape. However, 4:24 into the match, Garcia was able to get Lyles on his back and recorded a pin 4:34 into the match.


125 Pounds - Diego Jasso - Did not place
133 Pounds - Anthony Pereyra - 3rd Place (All-American)
133 Pounds - Raul Jimenez - Did not place
141 Pounds - Mario De La Torre - 2nd Place (All-American)
149 Pounds - Felix Osorio - State Champion (All-American)
157 Pounds - Trevor Thompson - 8th Place
157 Pounds - Cael Garriott - Did not place
165 Pounds - Armando Murillo - State Champion (All-American)
174 Pounds - Stone Robledo - 5th Place
184 Pounds - Rafael Guerra - 5th Place
197 Pounds - Malachi Lyles - 2nd Place (All-American)
285 Pounds - Kobe Pablo - 3rd Place (All-American)